Student Tina Gorjanc is using the late fashion icon's DNA in order to grow 'skin', which she intends to use to manufacture a limited number of jackets and bags.
In a bizarre piece of tech and fashion news, it has been reported that a fashion design student in London is planning to design a collection of leather jackets and bags made from the late icon Alexander McQueen’s skin.
Fashion publication Quartz claims that student Tina Gorjanc, who is in the process of completing a course in material futures at London’s Central Saint Martin’s College (McQueen’s own alma mater), is using his DNA to grow human skin in a lab project, with a view to manufacturing it into materials from which to make a range of bags and jackets.
Alexander McQueen's DNA is being used by a fashion student to grow 'skin' with which to manufacture a jacket
The ‘skin’ will bear tattoos, freckles, moles and other skin features unique to McQueen. Titling it ‘Pure Human’, Gorjanc is doing it to highlight “how corporations might one day exploit genetic information for luxury goods, and to showcase how little protection exists for a person's DNA,” according to the report.
She has managed to access the DNA because McQueen, the ground-breaking designer who committed suicide in 2010 at the age of 40, used a similar idea by sewing his own hair into his 1992 collection ‘Jack the Ripper Stalks His Victims’.
Gorjanc took out two patents in order to bring the project to fruition – one to protect the “bio-engineered genetic material that is grown in the lab using tissue-engineering technology and the process of de-extinction”, and the second to protect the design process itself.
My Pure Human project has been nominated for the amazing #novaaward #yournova Please support the project and vote for it at this link: http://www.mullenlowegroup.com/yournova #csm #centralsaintmartins #degreeshow #mullenlowegroup #materialfutures #provocatingfutures #mcqueen #tissueengeneering #biodesign
The idea has seemingly met with a warm response from McQueen’s brand. In Gorjanc’s own words: “People that were really close to him or that worked for his institution said that he might actually like the idea. He was always pushing the boundaries and always trying to break laws in fashion.”
The finished projects are highly unlikely to be for commercial sale, most likely destined for display in public galleries and museums.